Conexant Set-top Box Solutions Support Sony's Passage Technology

4/20/2004 - Conexant Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CNXT), the worldwide leader in semiconductor solutions for broadband communications, enterprise networks and the digital home, announced support of Sony’s PassageTM Technology in its cable set-top box (STB) semiconductor solutions. Passage Technology, developed by Sony, is a flexible, innovative cable television platform that provides for interoperability among multiple conditional access systems and equipment from multiple vendors, allowing these products to co-exist on legacy digital cable television networks. Conexant’s CX24430 chipset solution, which includes support for Passage Technology, will be on display at the Sony Passage Pavilion during the National Cable Telecommunications Association (NCTA) show in New Orleans from May 3-5, 2004.

“Conexant’s support for Passage Technology stems from a long-standing collaboration with Sony on various cable programs, and our continuing commitment to providing our customers with semiconductor solutions that support industry specifications,” said Jeff Crosby, vice president of Set-top Box Products for Conexant. “This innovative technology will allow cable operators to further leverage their investments in existing cable networks, expand service options and increase revenues.”

"Conexant has been a key supplier and leading developer of set-top box silicon solutions for many years," said Mike Paxton, cable industry analyst with In-Stat/MDR. "The company's support for Sony's Passage Technology underlines their commitment toward both innovative set-top box products and the cable TV industry."

Conexant’s highly integrated CX24430 interactive cable TV decoder chipset recently passed a series of complex compatibility tests to ensure support for Passage Technology. The programmable demultiplexor architecture used in Conexant’s cable STB chipsets allowed the Passage algorithms to be implemented through microcode firmware without any hardware changes. This microcode will enable current and future Conexant cable STB semiconductor solutions, including the CX24150 digital broadcast TV decoder chipset family, to support Passage Technology.

Conexant’s CX24430 family of interactive cable TV decoder ICs combines a high-speed DOCSIS cable modem and interactive TV MPEG decoder onto a single chip. This solution allows STB manufacturers to offer advanced, fully interactive cable STBs at prices slightly higher than broadcast-only STBs. In addition, the CX24430 family includes a dual CPU architecture with over 490 total Dhrystone MIPS to independently support cable modem and system applications functions. Other technologies supported by CX24430 include DOCSIS set-top gateway (DSG), OpenCable Applications Platform (OCAP) and MPEG-4 expandability through a coprocessor.

Conexant offers a comprehensive suite of digital STB components and system solutions for worldwide satellite, terrestrial and cable entertainment broadcasting networks. The company’s product portfolio includes silicon tuners, satellite communications channel demodulators, MPEG audio and video decoders and dial-up modems for back-channel applications. Complete reference designs that help manufacturers reduce cost and speed time-to-market are also available, bundled with a range of operating systems, middleware, driver and development tools.

About Conexant
Conexant’s innovative semiconductor solutions are driving broadband communications, enterprise networks and digital home networks worldwide. The company has leveraged its expertise and leadership position in modem technologies to enable more Internet connections than all of its competitors combined, and continues to develop highly integrated silicon solutions for broadband data and media processing networks. Key products include client-side xDSL and cable modem solutions, home network processors, broadcast video encoders and decoders, digital set-top box components and systems solutions, and dial-up modems. Conexant’s suite of networking components includes a leadership portfolio of IEEE 802.11a/b/g-compliant WLAN chipsets, software and reference designs, as well as solutions for applications based on HomePlug® and HomePNATM. The company also offers a complete line of asymmetric and symmetric DSL central office solutions, which are used by service providers worldwide to deliver broadband data, voice, and video over copper telephone lines. Conexant is a fabless semiconductor company with annual run-rate revenues of $1.2 billion. The company has approximately 2,400 employees worldwide, and is headquartered in Red Bank, N.J. To learn more, please visit us at

Conexant is a registered trademark of Conexant Systems, Inc.

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